Summary of the publisher Edit
An aged Professor Summerfield is forced to confront the equally bloody past of a fellow attendee at the predictably ill-fated First Interdisciplinary Conference on Vampirology.
- Bernice Summerfield
- Imogen Tantry
- Luke Duke
- Antonio Finlay
- Lloyd Doihara
- Stassy Leustassavil
- Emanuel Valeriani
- The planet Entruria is the homeworld of the Entrustine Horde. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)
- Among many callbacks to past stories in Bernice's speech, she witnesses the fall of the dinosaurs in The Adolescence of Time, and she meets Oscar Wilde in The Adventure of the Diogenes Damsel.
- Vlad III of Wallachia isn't a vampire. (PROSE: The Book of the War)
- Krisztina-Judit Németh is reintroduced. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)
- Alukahite culture influenced Earth's early vampire myths. (TV: State of Decay; PROSE: The Book of the War)
- Imogen and her sister Marina take their names from Shakespeare's plays Cymbeline and Pericles, Prince of Tyre; Imogen's later title Beatrix II comes from Much Ado About Nothing. The walking tree in Burnum Plaza is a reference to Birnam Wood in Macbeth.
- The starship Serene Diameter takes its name from the ships used by the eponymous count in the novel Dracula: the Demeter, and the Czarina Catherine. The name Meinir Doihara also echoes 'Mina Harker', the married name of Jonathan Harker's fiancée Mina Murray from the same novel.
- The planet Murigen is named after the Celtic goddess Morrigan, and its three suns Nemhain, Fea, and Macha are the aspects of Morrigan from Celtic myth. Similarly, Lugh is Cuchulainn's sun, despite Cuchulainn being Lugh's son in myth.
- The aquatic Lavellan species is named for the la-mhalan of Scottish folklore.
- The 'Lithian question' is a reference to James Blish’s 1958 novel A Case of Conscience, which also features a Jesuit encountering a secular alien race.
- Luke Duke's name comes from the Father Ted episode "A Christmassy Ted".
- The word "alukah", meaning a vampiric shapeshifter, comes from the Book of Proverbs, though it's sometimes translated as "horse leech". "Ekimmu" comes from Sumerian mythology.
to be added